A common misconception among youth and adults alike is that you can’t play sports with braces. But the truth is that you don’t have to sacrifice sports if you are a braces wearer. In fact, it’s pretty easy to get in the game as long as you take the proper safety precautions.
One of the top safety precautions to take as a brace wearer when playing sports is using a mouth guard. In fact, according to studies by the American Dental Association, mouth guards have been proven to reduce the risk of sports-related dental injuries.
If you’re a brace wearer, a mouth guard should be worn at all times while playing any sport—not just contact sports. There are mouth guards specifically designed for use with braces. Braces mouth guards offer a little more room than conventional mouth guards, which allows a better fit for the braces, teeth, and gums. These special mouth guards provide the same level of protection as a “regular” mouth guard. For a more custom fit for your mouth, braces mouth guards can be custom-made through the orthodontics’ office. While this option is more expensive, it does offer the most comfort for the wearer.
Beyond Mouth Guards
Protecting your teeth and gums goes beyond just wearing a mouth guard. While brace wearers can participate in most any sport, there are a few exceptions, such as boxing and wrestling, they should not partake in since the risk of getting hit in the mouth is so high. A hard hit can cause damage not just to your teeth and gums, but also to the inside of your cheek and tongue. If you do experience a hard hit to the mouth and feel like something is wrong, it’s important to stop play immediately and call your orthodontist.
Another potential issue is that even while wearing a mouth guard during play, you can still break brackets on your braces. While this shouldn’t cause you to stop play, it is important to call your orthodontist soon thereafter to replace the broken bracket so that your progress isn’t hindered.
If you have specific questions about how to best care for your teeth and braces while playing sports, give us a call today. Dr. Bennett can help you find the best solution to fit your individual need.